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drinks to avoid f.d.a. oversight. we've called on the agency to regulate energy drinks that have caffeine levels well above the 71 milligrams per 12-ounce threshold in soft drinks. today senator blumenthal and i asked the f.d.a. commissioner to meet with us to personally meet with us after thanksgiving to discuss the steps the f.d.a. is taking to ensure the safety of energy drinks. every other week we're seeing mounting evidence that energy drinks pose safety risks. you learn about young people hospitalized or seriously hurt after consuming what are marketed as little energy pick pick-me-ups. we look forward to working with commissioner hamburg to protect our children and to protect everyone in america from these die tear supplements, whether it is 5-hour energy or the monster energy drink which led to the death of this 14-year-old girl in maryland. mr. president, it's been many years since came to this floor and argued about dietary supplements. we all know what's involved here. i always preface my remarks by saying when i got up this morning i took my vitamin, i took my fish oi
and the truth is, they are brutal. you look what is happening in the iranian energy area, not only the fact that they're able to sell, you know, less than 50% of what they were selling before. it is that their production, their output is down from over 4 million barrels a day to 2.6 million barrels a day. part of the reason for that is precisely because of the sanctions, the inability to continue to invest in the energy infrastructure, the inability to continue to pump and store oil as they shut down oil fields that may not be so easy for them to recoup. you look what is happening to the currency, the devaluation. there are some estimates that the currency is being devalued by half every two months. think about what that means. it means that what you're buying, when you go and you buy something it costs you twice as much. it means what you have in the bank is worth half as much. if this is continuing to happen, it is bound to have an effect on the society as a whole whole. look at what the supreme leader has been saying over the last couple weeks. on more than one occasion he has explicitly
, afghanistan/pakistan and u.s. energy policy as the six top issues. so starting with that, looking at it strategically, do you feel that those are the core issues before president obama and this administration and our country going into 2013? um, if not, what would you change, what would you add? >> i -- when i was informed by lori murray about the outcome of the process by which the world affairs councils went through and came up with those six issues, i thought you had it exactly right. i think those are the big issues, and congratulations to you. i think you have them just right. i think there is an overarching issue on top of all of them that in some sense effects and enables all of them x that is if you look at at the national security challenges and the foreign policy challenges we face, i say that the number one challenge is getting our fiscal house in order. getting a handle on the debt, getting a handle on the deficit which are critical in order to get the economy growing again and people back to work. and i think that is the over -- it's certainly the number one domestic
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